A “delusional advisor” can have various meanings, but to me, it means an advisor who is unwilling to adapt to the evolving spectrum of the practice — individuals living in an illusion that the financial services industry is the same today as it was when they first started.
Our industry was stuck in a time warp from the time I entered it in 1983 (and definitely in the decades before that while my father was on the Street) until around 1996 or so. To stand out in today’s dynamic and competitive landscape, it’s important for advisors to re-evaluate their business functionalities and identify resources that can streamline their growth. Only in recent years have advisors looked to tap into the latest technology and resources to make their businesses more efficient and productive.
Based on my observation of the industry, below is a list of the most important resources, along with strategies that can help advisors beat the competition.
Making the Best Use of Technology
While we understand that technology does make our lives easier, many advisors I have come across simply don’t invest in setting up an infrastructure or process that could streamline their operations. Even in this day and age, I have seen many advisors use spreadsheets and notepads to inefficiently fumble through a task that a software program can do in seconds. Clients today have realized how technology enhances their experiences in other service industries and expect the same, or better, provisions from their advisors.
How: You need not become an expert in using technology, just in delivering the final product to your clients. For example, if you want to attract more tech-savvy clients, consider providing them with an app, or at the very least, an online client portal. All clients, not just millennials, want financial information at their fingertips — 68% of smartphone users have a financial app on their phones.
To get started, you may not even need to buy new technology. Instead, focus on better using the technology you have. For example, one of the most popular platforms is the CRM. Comb through your CRM and analyze the data like you would a portfolio or investment product — are there patterns and trends among your client base; are your clients all women; do they belong to a niche? The overall idea here is for you to share a more strategic and focused insight with your clients and to analyze your specialization with more depth — which brings me to my next section.